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My great-great-grandfather, Stephen O'Brien, arrived in the United States around 1870 and the only records I have for him are the ones generated in the U.S.  Unfortunately, these records only state that he was from Ireland.  The U.S. 1900 census documents that he was born in December.  After searching Baptism records in Ireland, the only Stephen O'Brien who matches a December birthday from 1840 through 1842 (which I used as estimate years) was born in Galway.  Having said this, I am only guessing the year and the county.may be correct.  Also, I cannot determine when he arrived in the U.S. because he had a very common name.  The 1900 census also states that he was naturalized.  I have found an 1869 naturalization document on Ancestry of a Stephen O'Brien who was naturalized in Connecticut in 1869, but again, I cannot be sure this is him.  I would appreciate all help and suggestions.  Thank you in advance for you time.

Cindy O'Brien Lee

Cindy O'Brien Lee

Sunday 7th February 2021, 04:24PM

Message Board Replies

  • Cindy:

    I had a look at Ancestry.com  Was your Stephen O'Brien living in Illinois, married to an Anne and he died in 1907? Can you get his death record to see if parents are shown.

    If someone arrived in America in 1870 then he would not have been naturalized in 1869.

    Many RC parishes in Ireland do not have records back to 1842 so it is possible that a baptismal record for your Stephen O'Brien is not available. 

    Have you considered a DNA test?

    Roger McDonnell

     

    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Sunday 7th February 2021, 06:12PM
  • Mr. McDonnell:

    I have done all of the above and yes, my Stephen is the one who lived in Illinois.  My assumption that he may have arrived before 1870 is that he told the census taker that he had been naturalized about 30 years, which would make sense.  The baptismal records identify only one Stephen O'Brien as being baptized in December and that was in the year listed in the records on Ancestry.  But beyond all of the information that I have gathered on my own, I am hopeful someone could find something that I am missing.  And yes, I had the DNA test done on my father.  It's interesting that my father's DNA matches that of descendants of Brian Boru, which is exciting.

    Having said all that, I would like to have some insight into something that I may be missing, or perhaps another avenue to pursue.  At this time, I am waiting for the National Archives to re-open.  It is possible that Stephen enlisted in the Union Army during the Civil War while he was living in St. Louis, MO.  I was told many years ago that he lived in St. Louis at one time and I did find him on a St. Louis census record in 1870.  A woman with the same name as Stephen's wife had applied for veteran benefits.  Hopefully, if this is him, his military record could contain more iniformation.

    Thank you for your input and if you can offer additional information for improving my search, I will greatly appreciate it.

    Regards,

    Cindy O'Brien Lee

    Cindy O'Brien Lee

    Monday 8th February 2021, 11:16PM
  • Cindy:

    I looked on the subscription site Roots Ireland and there were 22 Stephen O'Brien baptismal records from 1837-1847. None of the records were in 1842. I did see a December 2 1841 record for a Stephen O'Brien in Castlegar RC parish in Co. Galway. Castlegar is not far from Galway city. Father was Thomas O'Brien and mother Mary Small. Only one sponsor was shown-- Mary Burke.

    Roots Ireland and Ancestry do not match exactly but in my experience, Roots Ireland is more comprehensive.

    Regarding the DNA test for your father, it sounds like he took the Y-DNA test. Those tests as you know track the pure paternal line and go back hundreds of years. I would recommend that you or your father take an autosomal test which tracks back matches maybe for five generations on all of your lines.  Maybe you will match someone who has O'Brien connections and can assist with your family research. Many of the testing companies are having Valentine's Day specials and they always have Mother;s Day and Father's Day specials.

    Roger

     

    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Wednesday 10th February 2021, 12:35AM
  • Thank you, Roger.  We will do that!

    Regards,

    Cindy O'Brien Lee

    Cindy O'Brien Lee

    Friday 12th February 2021, 11:10PM